How to Play Pictionary

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How to Play Pictionary

First invented in 1985, Pictionary exploded onto the board game market in 1994 when it was manufactured by toy maker Hasbro. Incorporating creativity, guessing, and drawing, Pictionary has become one of the most popular board games in the world.


1. Divide into Two Teams

Pictionary is a game that can be played with large groups of people. However, each team should have no more than two players on it. If playing with an odd number, one player from the team must draw for both teams throughout the game.


2. Make Sure Each Team Has the Right Equipment

Each of the teams should have a notebook, pen or pencil, and a category card. The category cards are colour coordinated and show what item must be drawn when a player lands on a certain colour board space. For example, if a player lands on a red tile they must draw the object on the red category of the card. The different categories of Pictionary cards include person, place or animal, event or action, and difficult words.


3. Set Up the Game Board

Open the box and place the game board and the deck of cards in the middle. Locate the start square on the board and place one different coloured playing square for every team on this point.


4. Determine the Starting Order

Each team will roll the dice. The team that rolls the highest number plays first.


5. Play the Game

One member of the team will be designated to draw first. This player will select a word card from the deck and draw the object, word, or item that corresponds with the colour of the game square. The timer will be flipped over and the team will have 60 seconds to draw the item and guess what it is. Players are not permitted to write numbers or letters.

If the teammate is able to correctly guess the word on the card from the drawing before the 60 seconds is up, they can roll the die, pick another card, and repeat the process. However, if they do not guess the word in time the die is given to the team on their left who will roll and draw a word card. Given that the object of the game is to go from the starting point to the finish line, it is necessary for teammates to guess correctly, because they can only advance to another square on the board by guessing correctly within the 60 seconds. The first team to reach the finish square and guess the correct word is declared the winner.



Pictionary is one of the most popular board games for both children and adults. Players with a flair for originality and eye for detail will find themselves with an advantage.

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